Pest control in Toronto can remove rats from your home. One of the many reasons why you do not want rats in your home is because they can carry a number of diseases that can spread to humans. One of the scariest zoonotic diseases, i.e., diseases that humans can catch from animals, is rabies because it is almost always fatal. While there is a chance of a rat carrying rabies, the risk of catching rabies from a rat is relatively small.
Can Rats Get Rabies?
All mammals are susceptible to rabies, meaning that they could become infected if exposed to the virus. Rats are mammals, which means that they are susceptible to rabies infection as well.
Rabies is spread when bodily fluids, including blood and saliva, from an infected animal, get into the bloodstream of an animal that is not infected. A rat could contract rabies in a fight with an infected animal that bites or scratches the rat, especially animals that are common carriers of rabies, such as raccoons or skunks. Rats are omnivores that can eat almost anything. When food is scarce, they may scavenge the carcasses of dead animals, and if the animal had rabies, the rat could become infected by devouring its flesh.
How Common Is Rabies in Rats?
There are many good reasons to have professional rat removal if you find evidence of them in your home. However, while an infestation can be stressful, you can rest assured that the risk of contracting rabies from a rat is very low. Research has shown that rats are not common carriers of rabies. Furthermore, there is no record of a human being ever contracting rabies from a rat.
The main mechanism by which a rat would contract rabies is a bite from a predator that is infected. However, in most cases in which a rat receives a bite from a predator, it does not survive. Part of the reason why rats are not considered common carriers of rabies is that so few of them survive long enough to become infected.
What Are Symptoms of Rabies in Rats?
Though it is uncommon for wild rats to contract rabies, rats as test subjects have been infected with rabies under laboratory conditions so researchers could study their reactions. It is in these settings that researchers have been able to identify symptoms of rabies in rats.
It is a good idea to familiarize yourself with the symptoms of rabies in rats because, while it is rare for rats to carry the virus, it is not impossible. Animals infected with rabies can behave erratically, and you want to avoid a situation in which you could become bitten.
Rabies affects a rat’s ability to maintain balance. This makes climbing and walking more difficult. To an observer, the rat may give the impression of “drunken” behaviour because of the lack of coordination. A rat infected with rabies may also engage in self-mutilation. You may observe it biting its tail or its body.
If you see a rat that you think might be rabid, you should keep your distance from it. This is not a situation you can handle on your own; you should contact rodent pest control.
What Should You Do if You Have Rats in Your Home?
A rat infestation is a risky situation because, although the risk of rabies is low, rats can carry and spread other diseases, some of which are potentially deadly. Nevertheless, try to avoid panicking if you find signs of a rodent infestation. Do not try to handle the animals and, when cleaning up after them, wear personal protective equipment and follow appropriate safety precautions.
Truly Nolen’s rat removal services include trapping the animals and sealing off potential entry points through a process called exclusion. We also perform vector control of any parasites the rats may have been carrying, which can also spread disease. Find out more about rodent pest control in Toronto from Truly Nolen.